The Second Assembly
The Assembly took place on Wednesday, fifth of Ramadhan. The grand Sheikh al-Mufid, Abu Abdillah Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn al-Nu’man, may Allah bless him with beneficent care, said today:
He said: Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Umar al-Zayyat informed us that ‘Ali ibn Ismail reported to him from Muhammad ibn Khalaf, who reported from al-Husayn al-Ashqar, who reported from Qais, from Laith ibn Abi Sulaim, from Abdul Rahman ibn Abi Laila, reporting from Al-Husayn ibn ‘Ali, peace be upon him, that the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, said:
"Remain steadfast on our love, the Ahlul Bayt. For he who meets Allah with our love, will enter the Paradise with our intercession. By He Who controls my soul, a servant (of Allah) does not benefit from his deeds except by knowing us (and our stature)."
He said: Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Umar al-Ji’abi reported from Ishaq ibn Muhammad, who reported from Zaid ibn al-Muaddal, from Saif ibn Umar, from Muhammad ibn Kuraib, from his father, from Abdullah ibn Abbas that the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, said:
"Listen and obey those whom Allah has granted the authority - for that is the system of Islam."
He said: Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Umar ibn Salim has reported to me from Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Isa al-Ajaly, who reported from Masood ibn Yahya al-Nahdi, who reported from Sharik, from Abu Ishaq, from his father that:
Once when the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, was sitting with a group of his companions, ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib approached near him. Then the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, said: "Whoever wishes to look at Adam in his image and nobility, at Noah in his wisdom, at Ibrahim in his forbearance, he should look at ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib."
He said: Abu Ubaiydillah Muhammad ibn Imran al-Marzbani reported to me from Muhammad ibn Husayn al-Jawhaeri, who reported from ‘Ali ibn Sulaiman who reported from al-Zubair ibn Bakkaar, who reported from ‘Ali ibn Swaleh, who reported from Abdullah ibn Mas'ab, from his father that Abdullah ibn Abbas called upon Mua'wiya ibn Abi Sufyan, who welcomed him, and then said:
"O Ibn Abbas, you people wish to restrict Imamat (to yourselves) the way you have been privileged with Prophethood? By Allah, these two will never go together. Your argument about the Caliphate has put people in doubt. You say: 'We are Ahlul Bayt of the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, then why should the succession to the Prophethood be outside us?' This creates suspicion, for it has a semblance of truth, and a touch of justice.
But things are not the way you imagine. The Caliphate has to rotate in various tribes of Quraish according to the general will of the public and the consultation of the selected ones. And we do not find people saying: 'We wish we were ruled by Banu Hashim, for if they did, we would have been better off here and hereinfter.'
And if you had stayed away from it yesterday the way you claim, you would have fought for it today. And By Allah, if you had acquired the rulership, O Banu Hashim, then the ill wind of A'd and the thunderbolt of Thamood would not have been worse killer of men than you."
So Ibn Abbas replied (May Allah bless him with mercy): "O Mu'awiya, when you said that we base our argument on the Prophethood to prove our eligibility for Caliphate, then, by Allah, it is of course as you say. For if the Prophethood does not provide eligibility to the succession (Caliphate), what else does?
And when you say that Caliphate and Prophethood do not combine for anyone, then what would say about the verse in which Allah, Most High, Says:
'Do they envy the people for the bounty that Allah has given them by His Grace. Yet We gave the family of Ibrahim the Book, and the Wisdom and We gave them a mighty sovereignty.' (al-Nisa, 4:54)
So, the Book is the Prophethood, the Wisdom is the Sunnah, the Traditions of the Prophet, and the sovereignty is the Caliphate. And we are the descendants of Ibrahim, and that is why the order remains applicable for us till the Day of Judgement.
As for your claim that our arguments are dubious, then that is not true. Our arguments are brighter than the sun, and more luminous than the moon. The Book of Allah is with us, and the Traditions of the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, are within us. And you know that very well, but pride makes you turn away; and you hold your head in haughtiness because we killed your brother, your grandfather, your maternal uncle and your father's brother.
Well, do not shed tears over the rotten bones, and upon the souls which are perished in hell-fire; and do not be vengeful for the blood spilled in the way of polytheism, made lawful by unbelief, and is debased by the religion (Islam).
And as for the people who refused to give us preference and turned away from granting us their consensus, be it clear that what they have lost from us is greater than what we have lost from them! In every matter, the truth is established and the untruth is dispelled when the result is obtained.
And as for your pride in this transitory kingdom to which you have ascended by trickery, (remember that even) Pharaoh had such kingdom before you, and Allah destroyed him. O Banu Umayya, what you hold under rule for a day, we may hold it for two days after you; and what you have for a month, we may have it for two months, and if for a year, then we may hold it for two years.
And when you said that if we were the authority, our rule would have been a worse killer of men than the ill wind of A'd and the thunderbolt of Thamood, that statement has been belied by Allah, the Most High, in the Qur'an:
'And We did not send you but as a mercy to all beings.' (al-Anbiya, 21:107)
As we are the nearest inmates of the Prophet's household, our mercy over the creatures of Allah is evident; and the torment of your kingdom over the people is there for everyone to see. And after you have gone, the kingdom will be in the hands of your son and your brothers - and that will be a worse killer of people than the fatal wind. Then Allah will avenge through His devotees, and the final success is for the pious."
He said: Abul Hasan ‘Ali ibn Muhammad al-Qarashi reported to me with a permission to transmit, that ‘Ali ibn al-Hasan ibn al-Faddal reported from al-Husayn ibn Nasr, who reported from his father, who reported from Abdul Ghaffar ibn al-Qasim, who reported from al-Minhal ibn Amru who said he heard Abul Qassim Muhammad ibn ‘Ali, Ibn al-Hanafiyya (may Allah be pleased with him) say:
"There is nothing for you in your life except tasteful pleasure which brings you closer to your death, and nearer to your sleep. Every food causes a lump and every drink is accompanied by a choke! So ponder over your affairs; as if you were (already) a lost friend and a dream carried away! The people of the earth are on a journey, they do not have to break camp except elsewhere."
And with the same chain of narration, it is reported from Abul Qasim, Muhammad ibnAli, Ibn al-Hanafiyya, that the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, said:
"He who does not have mercy on our young ones, and shows no reverence to our old ones and does not recognize our rights, is not from us."
He said: Abul Hasan Muhammad ibn Muzaffar al-Warraq has reported to me from Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Abu al-Thalj who said al-Husayn ibn Ayyub had informed from his book, reporting from Muhammad ibn Ghalib, from ‘Ali ibn al-Hasan, from Abdullah ibn Jablah, from Zurayh al-Maharibi, from Abu Hamza al-Thumali who reported from Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn ‘Ali, peace upon him, who reported from his father, who reported from his grandfather that:
Allah sent Jibraeel to Muhammad, peace be upon him and his progeny, exhorting him to testify the wilayah of ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib (A.S.) in his lifetime, and to name him Amirul Mu’mineen before his death. Then the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, invited nine leaders (of the groups) and said: "I have invited you so that you may bear witness upon the earth in the name of Allah, whether you stand by it or hide it."
Then he said: "O Abu Bakr, Rise and greet ‘Ali as Amirul Mu’mineen (the Commander of the faithfuls)." He said: "Is this by the order of Allah and His Prophet?" He said: "Yes". So he stood and greeted him as such (i.e. Amirul Mu’mineen).
Then he said: "O Umar, Rise and greet ‘Ali as Amirul Mu’mineen." He said: "Should we name him as Amirul Mu’mineen by the order of Allah and His Prophet?" He said: "Yes". So he rose and greeted him.
Then he turned to Miqdad ibn al-Aswad al-Kindi: "Rise and greet ‘Ali as Amirul Mu’mineen." He stood up and greeted him, without repeating what the earlier two had said.
Then he said to Abu Dharr al-Ghifari: "Rise and greet ‘Ali as Amirul Mu’mineen." He stood up and greeted. Then he asked Hudhaifa al-Yamani: "Rise and greet Amirul Mu’mineen." He stood up and greeted. The he asked Ammar ibn Yasir: "Rise and greet Amirul Mu’mineen." He stood up and greeted. Then he asked Buraidah: "Rise and greet Amirul Mu’mineen." Buraidah was the youngest among them, he stood up and greeted.
Then the Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, said: "I have invited you for this matter, so that you are Allah's witnesses, whether you uphold it or abandon it."
He said: Abul Hasan Muhammad ibn al-Muzaffar reported to me from Muhammad ibn Jurair, who reported from Ahmad ibn Ismail who reported from Abdul al-Razzaq ibn Hammam, who reported from Mu'mar, from al-Zuhari, from Ubaidullah ibn Abdullah ibn Utbah, from Abdullah ibn Abbas, may Allah bless him with mercy, who said:
The Prophet, peace be upon him and his progeny, looked at ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib and said: "(Here is) the master herein, and the master hereinafter."
He said: Abu Ghalib al-Zurari reported to me from Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Khalid, who reported from Abdul Rehman ibn Abu Najran who reported from Safwan, from Seif al-Tammar, who reported that Abu Abdillah Ja'far ibn Muhammad (A.S.) said:
"Be supplicating constantly, for there is nothing like it to take you nearer (to Allah). And do not avoid asking for small matters because of its smallness, for the provider of the small is also the provider of the big."